Skin Cancer Screenings

Why are self-exams so important?

Skin cancer is the most common of all cancers, afflicting more than 1,000,000 Americans each year, a number that is rising rapidly. It is also the easiest to cure if diagnosed and treated early. When allowed to progress, however, skin cancer can result in disfigurement and even death.

Who should do self-exams?

You should! And if you have children, begin teaching them at an early age so they can do it themselves by the time they are teens. Coupled with a yearly skin exam by Dr. Binstock, self exams are the best way to ensure that you don’t become a statistic in the battle against skin cancer.

What are the warning signs?

  • A skin growth that increases in size and appears pearly, translucent, tan, brown, black, or multicolored
  • A mole, birthmark, beauty mark, or any tan, brown, or black spot that:
  • Changes color
  • Increases in size or thickness
  • Changes texture
  • Is irregular in outline
  • Is new or enlarging
  • Appears after age 21
  • A spot or sore that continues to itch, hurt, crust, scab, erode, or bleed
  • An open sore that does not heal within three weeks

Asymmetry One half is unlike the other half.

Border An irregular, scalloped, or poorly defined border.

Color Is varied from one area to another; has shades of tan, brown, or black; is sometimes white, red, or blue.

Diameter Melanomas usually are greater than 6mm (the size of a pencil eraser) when diagnosed, but they can be smaller.

evolving_chart_003
A mole or skin lesion that looks different from the rest or is changing in size, shape, or color.

Images povided by the American Academy of Dermatology.

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